A trabecula (plural trabeculae. From Latin for small beam.) is a small, often microscopic, tissue element in the form of a small beam, strut or rod, generally having a mechanical function, and usually but not necessarily composed of dense collagenous tissue.
Examples of trabeculae
- trabeculae of bone
- trabeculae of corpora cavernosa of penis
- trabeculae of corpus spongiosum of penis
- trabecular meshwork of the eye
- trabeculae of spleen
- trabeculae carneae
- septomarginal trabecula
Diminutive form of Latin trabs, which means a beam or bar. In the 19th century, the neologism trabeculum (with an assumed plural of trabecula) became popular, but is less etymologically correct. Trabeculum persists in some countries as a synonym for the trabecular meshwork of the eye, but this can be considered poor usage on the grounds of both etymology and descriptive accuracy.